New Zealand Visa Types, Requirements, and Application

Are you searching for the ultimate guide for applying for a New Zealand visa? About these visa fees? This article is right for you! We will show you the step by step for registration, visa requirements, and types as well as useful tips for smooth processing. Letโ€™s get started!

Who needs a visa to enter New Zealand?

Visa exemption

Australian permanent residents and citizens can enter, live, and work in New Zealand indefinitely without a visa.

Citizens of the following countries are exempt from visa but still need to apply for a New Zealand eTA before traveling, you can stay for a maximum of 3 months or if you are a British citizen, a maximum of 6 months:

๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Andorra ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ Iceland ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น Portugal
๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ท Argentina ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช Ireland ๐Ÿ‡ถ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Qatar
๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น Austria ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Israel ๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ด Romania
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ญ Bahrain ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น Italy ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฒ San Marino
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ช Belgium ๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ต Japan ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Saudi Arabia
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Brazil ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ผ Kuwait ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡จ Seychelles
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ณ Brunei ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ป Latvia ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ Bulgaria ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Liechtenstein ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Slovakia
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡น Lithuania ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Slovenia
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Chile ๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡บ Luxembourg ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท South Korea
๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ท Croatia ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ด Macau ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ Spain
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ Cyprus ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡พ Malaysia ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช Sweden
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Czech Republic ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡น Malta ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ Switzerland
๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Denmark ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡บ Mauritius ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ผ Taiwan
๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช Estonia ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Mexico ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ช United Arab Emirates
๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Finland ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡จ Monaco ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง United Kingdom
๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท France ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Netherlands ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ United States
๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช Germany ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด Norway ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡พย Uruguay
๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ท Greece ๐Ÿ‡ด๐Ÿ‡ฒ Oman ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ฆ Vatican City
๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ Hungary ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑ Poland

Transit visa

If you are passing through Auckland International Airport on your way to another country, you do not need to apply for a visa if you are coming from a visa-free transit country. This list includes:

๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ธ Bahamas ๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ญ Marshall Islands ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญ Philippines
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฒ Bermuda ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Micronesia ๐Ÿ‡ผ๐Ÿ‡ธ Samoa
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ด Bolivia ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ท Nauru ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ง Solomon Islands
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ด Colombia ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ผ Palau ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ญ Thailand
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ท Costa Rica ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฆ Panama ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ด Tonga
๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡จ Ecuador ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฌ Papua New Guinea ๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ป Tuvalu
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Indonesia ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡พ Paraguay ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡บ Vanuatu
๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Kiribati ๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Peru ๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ช Venezuela

New Zealand visa types

Visitor visa

Several options exist for visiting New Zealand temporarily:

  • Tourist visa: For holidays, sightseeing, visiting family/friends, or other short-term purposes. Valid for 9 months, with stays of up to 3 months.
  • Group visitor visa: For organized tour groups of 11+ people visiting together. Valid for the duration of the intended group visit.
  • Business visitor visa: For short business trips like meetings, events, or exploring opportunities. Valid for 3 months.
  • Transit visa: For passing through New Zealand to another country. Maximum stay of 24 hours.
  • Limited visa: For short-notice urgent visits. Valid for a single entry for up to 3 months.

Work visa

To work legally in New Zealand, foreign nationals need an appropriate work visa:

  • Essential skills work visa: For taking up employment in areas where skilled workers are needed. Valid 1โ€“5 years.
  • Work to residence visa: A pathway to permanent residency for workers in long-term shortage areas. Valid up to 30 months.
  • Working holiday visa: For young adults aged 18-30 to work and travel in New Zealand. Valid for 12 months.
  • Post-study work visa: Allows international students to work in New Zealand after finishing their studies. Valid for 1โ€“3 years.

Student visa

International students need a student visa to pursue full-time studies in New Zealand:

  • Student visa: For enrolling in a university degree or post-graduate program in New Zealand.ย 
  • English language student visa: For enrolling in an English language course of up to 3 months.
  • Group student visa: For groups of 10+ students studying together in New Zealand. Valid for the duration of the program.

Resident visa

For foreign nationals who want to live permanently in New Zealand:

  • Skilled migrant category: For workers with skills that New Zealand needs. Provides a pathway to permanent residency.
  • Family category: For partners, dependent children, and parents of New Zealand citizens or residents wanting to live together.
  • Investor and entrepreneur visa: For investors and business owners who want to establish enterprises and residences in New Zealand.
New Zealand visa
New Zealand visa

Other visa types

  • Partnership visa: For partners of New Zealand citizens or residents
  • Parent visa: For parents of New Zealand citizens or residents
  • Interim visa: For onshore applicants waiting for visa decision
  • Refugee or protection visa: For refugees and asylum seekers

New Zealand visa requirements

The key requirements for a New Zealand visa are:

  • Valid passport: You need a valid passport with at least 3 months of validity beyond the date you intend to leave New Zealand.
  • Completed application form: Each visa has its form that needs to be completed fully and accurately. Forms are available online.
  • Supporting documents: You have to provide supporting paperwork like birth certificates, medical checks, police certificates, proof of funds, tickets, insurance, etc depending on the visa type.
  • Visa fees: Each visa application has specific fees that need to be paid when applying. Fees range from NZD $170 to NZD $5000.
  • Travel or health insurance: You may need to show proof of valid travel or health insurance coverage when applying for some New Zealand visas.
  • Health and character checks: Some visas require police clearances, medical checks, and chest X-rays to show you are of good health and character.
  • Proof of financial support: You may need to provide bank statements, tax documents, pay slips, or sponsorship letters to prove you have sufficient funds.
  • Biometrics: Applicants from certain countries need to provide biometrics (photographs and fingerprints) when applying for specific New Zealand visas.
  • Purpose of visit: You must provide details, documentation, and assurance that you will leave New Zealand after your authorized stay.
  • Evidence of ties to your home country: Documents showing you will return to your home country after your visa expires, like proof of job, property, and family ties.

So by meeting the requirements for your specific visa and situation, you can successfully obtain a New Zealand visa.

How to apply for New Zealand visa?ย 

Here is a step-by-step guide for New Zealand visa application:

  • Step#1. Determine the correct visa category: The first step to apply for New Zealand visa is to determine the appropriate visa category for your trip. New Zealand offers various types of visas including visitor, student, work, and resident visas. Carefully evaluate your travel intentions and choose the visa category that best suits your needs.
  • Step#2. Gather required documents: Once you have identified the appropriate visa category, collect all the necessary documents.ย  These documents may include a valid passport, passport photos, proof of financial resources, medical certificates, and any other supporting documents specific to your visa type.
  • Step#3. Complete the application form: Next, fill out the visa application form carefully and completely. You can access the forms online via the Immigration New Zealand website or obtain physical copies from New Zealand diplomatic missions abroad. Ensure that all information provided is truthful and consistent with your supporting documents.
  • Step#4. Pay the visa fee: Pay the required visa application fee. The fees vary based on the visa type and the duration of your intended stay.ย Make sure to pay the correct amount to avoid delays in processing your application.
  • Step#5. Submit your application: Submit your completed application form, all required documents, and visa fee payment receipt.ย You can submit your application online, by post, or in person at a New Zealand visa application center or a New Zealand diplomatic mission abroad.
  • Step#6. Wait for processing: Please allow for processing time after submitting your application. Processing times vary depending on the type of visa and the workload at the immigration office. Please see the estimated processing times on the Immigration New Zealand website or contact the submission center for a more specific timeline.
  • Step#7. Attend an interview: You might occasionally have to go to an interview to apply for a visa. This interview aims to verify the information provided in your application and assess your eligibility for the visa.ย Prepare well for the interview and provide honest and consistent responses to the questions asked.

New Zealand visa fees

New Zealand visa fees vary depending on the visa type and the duration of your intended stay. Here’s a list of some common visa fees:

  • Visitor Visa (up to 9 months): NZD 190
  • Student Visa (up to 4 years): NZD 350
  • Work Visa (up to 3 years): NZD 470
  • Resident Visa: NZD 710

Please note that these fees are subject to change, and it’s essential to check the current fees on the New Zealand Immigration website or with the nearest New Zealand diplomatic mission.

Processing time for New Zealand visa

Queenstown - New Zealand
Queenstown – New Zealand

The processing time for a New Zealand visa depends on several factors, including the visa type, the completeness of your application, and the workload at the immigration office:

  • Visitor Visa: 15 working days
  • Student Visa: 20 working days
  • Work Visa: 25 working days
  • Resident Visa: 60 working days

These processing times are estimates and may vary based on individual circumstances. It’s essential to check the current processing times on the New Zealand Immigration website or with the nearest New Zealand diplomatic mission.

Tips when applying for New Zealand visa

Here are some useful tips to help you navigate the New Zealand visa application process smoothly:ย 

  • Read the instructions carefully: Thoroughly read and understand the visa application instructions. Carefully reading the instructions ensures you provide all required information and documents. Following the instructions precisely increases your chances of a successful application.
  • Start early: Start the application process well before your planned travel date. Starting early allows sufficient time for processing and any potential delays. Early preparation helps you avoid last-minute stress and gives you time to address any issues.
  • Use official channels: Only use official channels to submit your visa application, e.g. the Immigration New Zealand website or diplomatic missions to avoid unauthorized agents or fraud.ย 
  • Provide accurate information: Please ensure that all information provided in your application is truthful, consistent, and accurate. Giving inaccurate or misleading information might lead to the denial of a visa or perhaps legal repercussions.ย 
  • Track your application: Check the status of your visa application regularly and contact immigration if you notice any delays or have any questions.ย 
  • Be prepared for an interviewย : If necessary, prepare thoroughly for the visa interview by reviewing your application, collecting supporting documents, and practicing answering possible questions honestly and confidently.ย 

By following these tips, you can increase your chances of a successful visa application and make the process easier and more efficient.